Quimbo asks gov’t: Take a second look at Bayanihan 3, certify measure as urgent
MANILA, Philippines —Marikina City Rep. Stella Luz Quimbo on Monday asked the national government, particularly the country’s economic managers, to “take a second look” at the proposed third Bayanihan measure that seeks to cushion the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
Quimbo, who authored House Bill No. 8628 or the “Bayanihan to Arise As One Act” together with Speaker Lord Allan Velasco, cited the 9.5-percent drop in gross domestic product (GDP) in 2020 in her calls for the country’s economic manager to back the proposed measure.
“Take a second look dahil sana bago magsabi sila na we cannot afford it… Ngayon, it’s official, 9.5 percent contraction [ang Philippine economy]. Sana they take a second look at this Bayanihan 3 and to objectively assess lahat ng ating datos na pumapasok, particularly ang job losses and business closures,” Quimbo said in an interview with reporters.
(Take a second look before they say that we cannot afford it… It’s official, we had a 9.5% contraction in our economy. I hope they take a second look at this Bayanihan 3 and to objectively assess all the data, particularly on job losses and business closures.)
Quimbo likewise expressed hopes that the bill will be certified as urgent to hasten its passage.
“Number two, sana naman ma-certify as urgent ang bill na ito and that’s the fastest way na ma-deliver natin itong ayudang pampamilya, pang-manggagawa, pati na rin ang para sa small businesses ng pinakamabilis na panahon,” the lawmaker added.
(I hope this will be certified as urgent because that’s the fastest way we can deliver this assistance to the families, workers, and even small businesses.)
The breakdown of the proposed P420-billion appropriation under Bayanihan 3:
- P52 billion for subsidies to small business for wages and other worker-related expenses;
- P100 billion for the capacity-building of businesses in critically impacted sectors;
- P108 billion for additional social amelioration to impacted households through programs of the Department of Social Welfare and Development;
- P70 billion for the provision of assistance and capacity-building to farmers, livestock producers and fishermen;
- P30 billion for the implementation of unemployment assistance and cash-for-work programs under the Department of Labor and Employment;
- P30 billion for internet allowances to primary, secondary and tertiary students and teachers in public and private educational institutions;
- P5 billion to the Department of Public Works and Highways for the rehabilitation of typhoon-affected areas, including the repair, reconstruction and/or construction of flood control works, roads, bridges, public buildings and other damaged public works, to be distributed proportionately among affected provinces and cities;
- P25 billion to the Department of Health for the procurement of COVID-19 medication and vaccines, and to finance logistics, information awareness campaigns, and other related operational expenses
Velasco, meanwhile, earlier said some 115 members of major political parties and blocs in the House have expressed their support and signified intent to co-author the said bill.
The House Speaker said the two previous Bayanihan Laws were “not sufficient for the genuine economic recovery of the country.”
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